HELENSBURGH tennis star Gordon Reid has celebrated success off the court after receiving an honorary doctorate from Glasgow Caledonian University.

The Grand Slam singles champion and Paralympic gold medallist served up an inspirational message at a masterclass last week, discussing how he overcame adversity at a young age to rise to the top of the world rankings.

Attending Hermitage Academy, he was a talented junior player until a week before his 13th birthday when a rare condition, Transverse Myelitis, left him paralysed from the waist down.

By the age of 16, he was pulling on a Team GB shirt and competing at his first Paralympic Games in Beijing.

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The wheelchair tennis superstar, who has won titles at Wimbledon, the US Open, the French Open, and the Australian Open, told students that anything is possible in life through hard work.

He said: "It's a great honour to receive this award from GCU, especially since I grew up near Glasgow and the city is my home now.

"My story is on the extreme scale but everyone goes through tough times in life. It is possible to overcome adversity and break down the barriers placed in front of you.

"You shouldn't set limits on yourself or what is possible.

"People think it's the worst thing that could happen to you, but competing at the Paralympics and seeing people with no arms or legs, that is a reminder that everyone has challenges and it's amazing what people can overcome when they set their mind to it."

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Gordon, who is looking forward to a busy summer competing at the French Open and Wimbledon, is due to fly to Israel this week to compete for Team GB in the World Team Cup.

Targeting further medals, his natural drive to compete remains steadfast.

He added: "When I first started playing I was just doing it to get active and healthy. I never thought I would become world number one.

"It becomes an obsession and most of the time it's the failures you have and the bad times which drive you on."

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Professor Pamela Gillies CBE, principal and vice-chancellor of GCU, said: “Gordon’s story is truly remarkable. His journey to the top of world tennis as a Grand Slam wheelchair singles champion is a testament to his hard work, determination and incredible talent.

"An outstanding ambassador for sport in general, he continues to promote wheelchair tennis on the global stage.

“Gordon is an inspirational figure and we are delighted he has accepted our honorary degree and joins our university community for the common good.”